Saturday, December 19, 2009

Polar Express Day!

We had a really relaxing and fun last day before the holiday break.  We read the story The Polar Express by Chris VanAllsburg and then sequenced the story and made these cute trains.  The best part of the day was getting to where our jammies and lay on the floor, watch the movie, and relax.  They loved it!  We also got to have a sing a long in the gym.  They were so cute singing! Tyler’s mom made some yummy cupcakes and brought us some juice and treat bags to finish up our day.  Thank you Mrs. Erickson!  Here’s a look at our last day of 2009 together!

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We had a visit from Mr. and Mrs. Claus at our sing a long!

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We won the door contest!

Our class won the VPS Holiday door contest!  We got to have peppermint floats provided by Mr. Mountain and Mrs.Woodward.  They were very yummy!  I was helping hand out the floats and cleaning up so I didn't get any pictures, but here is a look at our door again so you can see how “Mrs. Schmelzer’s Angels” won!

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Remarkable Reindeer!

We learned facts about real reindeer this week. I know the kids were amazed to learn the remarkable facts. We made Reindeer Facts books, made these cute reindeer antlers, and got to take home some magical reindeer food to leave out on Christmas Eve. Reindeer and Christmas gifts 010 Reindeer and Christmas gifts 005

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We have spent the week at guided reading time sharing Christmas stories and playing vocabulary games. Today the kids got to pick out a book from me for their Christmas gift and also a candy cane to use as a pointer as they read. The kids received a Christmas card from their pen pals. They have been getting letters from the Emporia State Softball Team and they sent them some really neat cards this week. The ESU team is writing to us as part of their community service hours. My daughter Karley is on the team. They also got to decorate a holiday doorknob hanger. They had a lot of fun fixing these up.

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Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas Around the World

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We have been working on Christmas Around the World and learning how we have gotten some of our Christmas traditions from other countries.  We learned that we got the tradition of the Christmas tree from Germany.  These are the cute trees we made using glitter glue and sequins.  We read the story The Little Christmas Tree and the kids shared about getting their trees and decorating them.

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We know that the kids can’t wait until Santa comes to visit!  We learned that Santa has many different names in other countries.  We learned that Pere Noel is the name used in France. We also learned that children leave their wooden shoes out with hay and carrots in their shoes for Sinterklaus’ horse in the Netherlands.  Other names we learned that Santa has is Father Christmas and St. Nicholas.  Here are the Santa’s that we made to decorate our classroom.

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In Hungary we learned that an angel helper brings gifts to good little children.  The tradition says that on Christmas Eve an angel sets up a tree and places the gifts under it.  We made angels and decorated our classroom door.  We are hoping to win a contest for the cutest door in the school and we could win peppermint floats!

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Kwanzaa is a week-long celebration held in the United States honoring African heritage and culture.  We made a kinara (candle holder)to show the seven candles and customs that they celebrate as each candle is lit. It is observed from December 26 to January 1 each year.  Kwanzaa is considered one of the primary holidays within the United States.

Christmas Around the World and gifts 012 Old Befana is a story about an old lady in Italy that was said to be looking for the Baby King. The belief is that she would slide down the chimney on her broom handle leaving candy and toys for good children in hopes to find the Baby King.

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In Sweden the Christmas season begins on December 13 on the feast of St. Lucia.  We made these crowns of candles to celebrate their tradition.

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Our tradition is to give gifts to those that we love at Christmas time.  We worked so hard to create these snowman plaques for gifts to give our families.  I hope you enjoy them and know how much love was put into making these.  They were so excited to bring them home and give them to you!  Merry Christmas!!